Frank Lampard ruled out of England squad through injury for Euro 2012



By Adam Higgins
Chief Football Editor 



Lampard's withdrawal from the 23-man party has significantly weakened the England central midfield area- already without Gareth Barry



Frank Lampard has been ruled out of England's Euro 2012 campaign with a thigh injury suffered during a rigorous training session on Wednesday morning.

The news was confirmed after the 33-year old Chelsea midfielder, who only joined up with the squad on Tuesday after extended leave following the Blues' Champions League final participation, was examined by England's medical staff after scan results were revealed. It was initially thought that Lampard would be able to recover in time for the start of the tournament in Poland & Ukraine next week- with England not in action until Monday 11th June against France in Donetsk in their first Group D game.

Liverpool midfielder Jordan Henderson will be called into the squad- having been on the five man standby list- although this is subject to agreement from UEFA's medical team.

Manager Roy Hodgson commented on Frank's injury in a press conference held to the media: "It's a huge blow for the team, especially coming after the loss of another senior player in Gareth Barry. The fact that the doctor cannot guarantee Frank could take part in any of the group matches means we have to replace him in the central midfield area. Apart from it being a huge blow to me and the team, I'm especially disappointed for Frank himself," he added. He has been in very good form and was looking forward to the tournament. He made a huge contribution towards us qualifying for the Euros so it is cruel to be forced out through injury just before the tournament."

Chelsea's Lampard is one of the most experienced players that former Fulham boss Hodgson had to call upon with 90 caps. His withdrawal from the squad is a double blow for manager Roy Hodgson who is already without another experienced midfielder in Manchester City's Gareth Barry, who was ruled out of the tournament after suffering a groin injury in the 1-0 win over Norway. This leaves Jones, a not fully-fit Scott Parker, Henderson and captain Steven Gerrard as the Three Lions' pickings for central midfield.

If 21-year old Henderson is allowed to replace Lampard then Liverpool will be the most represented club in Hodgson's squad, with five of the twenty-three squad members from the Reds, despite a disappointing season which saw them eighth in the Premier League. Henderson, who has made only two senior England caps including last week's friendly victory in Oslo, was originally ignored to replace Barry with Everton defender Phil Jagielka preferred and Manchester United's Phil Jones moved to midfield.

Click here to watch Frank Lampard's last tournament goal for England in Euro 2004


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